Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Dive Log: Muscat, Oman

Our primary purpose for visiting Muscat over the Eid holiday was to do some more scuba diving in the Middle East. We had been to Dibba in Fujarah in early July and were pleasantly surprised by the amount of fish and thrilled by the warm water. Muscat still had the fish (maybe even more!) but it was as cold as diving in Hawaii (which is really cold!) We hadn't even brought our wetsuits expecting the same balmy water from Dibba! Luckily, we were warned before we got on the boat and were able to rent wetsuits for the day - I don't think we would have lasted 10 minutes without them.

We dove with an oufit called BlueZone watersports, which is run by a lovely woman named Christine who has been in Oman for more than 20 years. She worked to help establish the very first diving center in Oman, so she knows her stuff! Once again we were the only divers in the group, which was awesome as it allowed us to dive at our own pace with just a dive master. Along on the boat was a small group working towards their Rescue diver certification, so while we checked out the sites, they were fake saving each other from shark bites and empty air tanks. :)

We dove from a boat this time, unlike Spain where we dove from shore. The main attraction was all the fish - medium sized and all kinds of varieties. We did see one huge grouper (probably around 4-5 feet long) but most of the fish were of medium size. Butterfly, parrot, lionfish, nudi brancs, barracuda (a big school too - scary!) and lots more. The visibility wasn't great - a little less than Dibba I think, which probably prevented us from seeing some of the bigger fish and turtles (at least that's my story). It was a nice set of dives, but due to the cold water we were ready to come in after two. And due to the mediocre visibility, one day of diving was plenty.

I think we might go back one day and try a site off one of the islands up the coast a bit, or maybe another time of year with the hopes that the visibility is a little clearer.

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